If a tooth has been broken or damaged by decay, your dentist will try to fix it with a filling, crown or other treatment. Sometimes, though, there’s too much damage for the tooth to be repaired. In this case, the tooth needs to be extracted. A very loose tooth also will require extraction if it can’t be saved, even with bone replacement surgery (bone graft).
A dental implant is an artificial tooth root made of a material, like titanium, that will permanently become part of your jaw. This allows a permanent or removable artificial tooth or bridge to be placed that will function and look just like your natural teeth. Dental Implants are often preferred over removable dentures because they can be a permanent option, are treated like regular teeth once installed, and are very durable.
Teeth whitening is not permanent. A touch-up maybe needed every several years, and more often if you smoke, drink coffee, tea, or wine.
Root canal therapy is needed when the nerve of a tooth is affected by decay or infection. In order to save the tooth, the pulp (the living tissue inside the tooth), nerves, bacteria, and any decay are removed and the resulting space is filled with special, medicated, dental materials, which restore the tooth to its full function.
Having a root canal done on a tooth is the treatment of choice to save a tooth that otherwise would die and have to be removed. Many patients believe that removing a tooth that has problems is the solution, but what is not realized is that extracting (pulling) a tooth will ultimately be more costly and cause significant problems for adjacent teeth. Root canal treatment is highly successful and usually lasts a lifetime.
You may need surgery for severe gum disease (periodontitis) if it cannot be cured with antibiotics or root planing and scaling. A gingivectomy removes and reshapes loose, diseased gum tissue to get rid of pockets between the teeth and gums. The doctor will start by numbing your gums with a local anesthetic. He or she may use a laser to remove loose gum tissue.
If you maintain good dental care after surgery, a gingivectomy is likely to help stop gum disease. Your gums should become pink and healthy again.